An RAC survey of more than 3,000 motorists* has revealed as many as 39 per cent of people have been let down by their vehicles as they make their way to and from a variety of leisure-related trips.
And, of the 1,000 people who have broken down on recreational journeys, a fifth (22 per cent) have got more than they bargained for on seemingly straightforward shopping trips as they have ended up having to seek roadside assistance.
Eighteen per cent have come unstuck at family gatherings while 14 per cent have lost out at sporting events and eight per cent have needed a mechanical ‘tune up’ at one of the UK’s many music festivals.
RAC technical director David Bizley says: “You never know when your vehicle is going to let you down, a fact borne out by our research which has shown extraordinary numbers of people facing the trauma of potentially not making it to their special destination or, nearly as bad, struggling to get home after a trip.”
“Our 2012 Report on Motoring reaffirmed the car is an essential part of our lives whether it’s for the daily commute to work, socializing, keeping in touch with the family, going on holiday or for a host of other leisure activities. Our RAC patrols and operations staff work around the clock to make sure motorists all over the UK can get where they need to when they want to. As well as keeping our customers on the road we are constantly campaigning for better, cheaper and safer motoring for every driver.”
Anyone planning a recreational trip this summer – from festival to family holiday – should think of the word ‘FORCE’ as a way of remembering to carry out the following simple checks to reduce their chances of breaking down en route:
• Fuel – make sure you’ve got enough fuel in the tank to get you where you’re going: the last thing you want is to be looking at the fuel gauge as you desperately try to find a garage
• Oil – check your vehicle’s oil levels before you set off to avoid experiencing a nasty engine problem
• Rubber – always make sure your tyres are inflated to the correct pressure. If you’re going off on holiday full loaded the chances are you will probably need to put more air in your tyres
• Coolant – it used to be a simple water check but nowadays it’s coolant you have to monitor to make sure your vehicle doesn’t get all hot and bothered on the road
• Electrics – a quick look around your car might reveal a blown bulb or fuse which you can change before setting out. Is your battery in tip-top condition? Faulty or flat batteries are the cause of 500,000 RAC call-outs every year
If, however, you find yourself at the mercy of some sort of mechanical misfortune this summer then ring RAC Breakdown on 0844 774 5293. And, if you need to join on the spot you can take advantage of our free onward travel summer offer – worth £35 – which guarantees to get you where you’re going.
Last year RAC’s 1,700 patrols attended 2.2m breakdowns, fixing four out of five at the roadside in an average of 38 minutes.
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If you are a journalist and would like further information, please contact:
RAC media relations manager
T: 0161 452 4242
M: 07725 822107
*Conducted by Ragdoll market research in June 2012 via an online poll of 3,000 UK consumers.
Notes to Editors
With around seven million customers, RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organisations, providing services for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistance, insurance, vehicle inspections and checks, legal services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information - RAC is able to meet drivers’ needs.
RAC is committed to providing the very highest levels of service to its customers and ranked first for customer satisfaction by J.D. Power and Associates' UK Roadside Assistance Study 2006 to 2009. RAC was also the top-named breakdown organisation in the July 2009, January 2010, July 2010 and July 2011 half-yearly UK Customer Satisfaction Index from the Institute of Customer Service.
Which? Recommended Breakdown Services Provider September 2011 and RAC Insurance has also been awarded the Best Overall Vehicle Insurance Provider 2010/11 by themoneypages.com.
RAC supports FairFuelUK campaigning for fairer taxes on petrol & diesel. Show support and find out more at fairfueluk.com
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